Fair Share in Starting Product Management


Many CEOs struggle with getting product management to work in their companies. It takes more than hiring a good product manager; the CEO’s role is absolutely central in establishing a meaningful product management function. But it often falls short. That’s why I’ve just published an e-book about how CEOs should think about implementing a product management function for the first time (or maybe the second time.) It’s focused on B2B companies, where their business models have a profound impact on product management. My new e-book is built on my first-hand lessons as well as what others have shared with me.

Book coverSo, in the spirit of sharing, you can download my book here, for free:10 Steps to Implementing B2B Product Management: The CEO Playbook You can copy, share, adapt and build on this work any way you please, as long as you credit the source.  I hope you find the ideas helpful to you and your company.  I think you’ll find tremendous value in sharing – in both directions. I know that it’s been a major factor in my own improvement and that it’s benefited the organizations that I’ve worked with.

I’ve spent most of my career in product management with technology companies. But, there the concept of sharing didn’t really seem to apply; after all confidentiality, occasionally leavened with paranoia, was the watchword when it came to breakthrough innovations.  However, for more than a decade now, I’ve actually been an active promoter of sharing.  And what I’ve been sharing –with peers as a product leader and entrepreneur, with customers as head of a membership organization, with clients as a consultant, and with grad students as an adjunct professor at Carnegie Mellon University – are the things I’ve learned through my work, my study and through exchanges with others about how to make products, and the internal functions that affect them, more successful.

Since last summer, I’ve taken on a new role with a startup company.  I think it’s poised to take continuous improvement to a higher level than ever before.  That new startup, OnlyBoth, is a pioneer in benchmarking software powered by artificial intelligence.  Digging into our customer’s data, our software completely automates the discovery of opportunities for improvement and sources of best practices. It makes comparing an individual or organization to others much simpler, faster and better.

At the same time, I’m keenly aware that I have a lot to learn from people who already do what I’m just now starting to do in my new capacity as Chief Customer Officer.  I’ve already talked with a large number of Customer Success executives across the country – most of whom I’d never met before – who were kind enough to share their time, suggestions and lessons with me.  I’ll be forever indebted.  They also helped me to realize that what I’ve learned in product management can be of tremendous value for customer success leaders. As a result, I’ll continue my efforts to share useful ideas with them and others, and how our new benchmarking technology is helping to drive continuous improvement for individuals and organizations.

You can download my free e-book here: 10 Steps to Implementing B2B Product Management: The CEO Playbook (PDF, 6.7 MB, 52 pages)

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